Shelley Frankenstein!: CowPiggy

Top Shelf. (Shelley Frankenstein!: Bk. 1). Aug. 2023. 168p. pap. $14.99. ISBN 9781603095228.
Gr 4 Up–Shelley Frankenstein wants to bring terrifying creatures to life like her famous ancestor, but unfortunately, her blood-curdling ideas tend to backfire. Her toy creature combinations should be frightening, but instead, every one of them turns out to be adorable. When Shelley and her brother Iggy combine a toy cow with a toy pig and bring it to life in the Frankenstein family graveyard, Shelley is determined to make this latest creature behave like a monster really should. She pushes past its natural instincts to say “MOINK” and give lots of hugs, and teaches it to be a creature that frightens children instead of delighting them. But this plan turns out to be Shelley’s biggest mistake of all. This story is filled with plenty of dark and light humor, and it features a protagonist who learns over time that not everyone enjoys being scared, and not every creature wants to be scary. Readers will enjoy watching Shelley in her destructive mode, but they will also enjoy seeing her evolve into a girl who learns important lessons about whether getting scared is really fun. The cute and colorful artwork is simply charming, with plenty of visual humor that will keep kids (and adults) entertained.
VERDICT For older kids who enjoy scary stories with a funny twist!

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